Body Back, Body Front. Body Down, Body Up.

Helping a Child To Swing and Steer a Nintendo

Alma, John’s occupational therapist, explained it this way:

John’s ability to pump himself while swinging needs some help.

So use new words about the body, not just the feet kicking.

Forget “Pump your feet, John!”    Didn’t work.

Instead, try, “Body Back” (to go forward), “Body Front” (to go backward).

or “Body Down” (to go forward), “Body Up” (to go backward).

Whole-body, physical-moving leaning and learning, using new words to overcome inertia.

Try this with your child who keeps asking you to push them on the swing.

Also, I have noticed John is now leaning his body to keep Mario and Luigi on the road.

Steering to the left

Turning Left

John has figured out how to use our old Nintendo DS (the original handheld).

Not the Sports Wii while standing up.

Instead, when he is sitting.

This skill has been a long time in coming.

And I have not been able to help him, because I don’t understand the machine controls.

Besides, it is best that he (with peer modeling) figured it out by himself, right?

John is now full body into the road maneuvering, with those glazed-over eyeballs.

I don’t mind that he’s super-absorbed into the game, because that’s what other kids do, right?

That is the major litmus test I use.

If other (neuro-typical) kids do it, he gets to do it.

Most of the time.

And I am surely going to count all this physical movement as therapy.

Steering to the right

Turning Right

So, see if these ideas help your child?

Peace be with us,



I am a mom of learning differences, an educator and a former corporate warrior. I help you understand what to do to help your children with learning differences prepare for today so that they can be ready for life. I share with you all that I have learned. We always use a team to have fun and learn together.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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